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Russia expresses protest to US Ambassador over CIA agent's foiled recruitment attempt

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US Ambassador McFaul leaving Russia's Foreign Ministry in MoscowUS Ambassador McFaul leaving Russia's Foreign Ministry in Moscow Photo: RIA-NovostiRussia has filed a note of protest to US Ambassador Michael McFaul over CIA’s foiled attempt to recruit a Russian intelligence officer.

An announcement to this effect has been posted online by the Russian foreign office that today summoned the American diplomatic chief over the spy row involving embassy's third political secretary and CIA undercover spy, Ryan Fogle.

Following the arrest, the ousted intelligence officer was declared “persona non grata” and strongly advised to leave Russia “as soon as possible.”

Detained CIA agent was a keen poker player and shotgun-lover

According to public record, recently detained Fogle is a 29-year-old from St. Louis, who in 2006 graduated from Colgate University in New York and moved to Washington. After that, his home address shifted back and forth between the St. Louis area and the Virginia suburbs outside of Washington, where the CIA's Langley headquarters is located.

Reached by phone at her home in St. Louis, Mr. Fogle's mother, Patty Fogle, told the Wall Street Journal that she has "nothing to say."

Phil Harris, who said he is a friend of Mr. Fogle's in the St. Louis area, said he last saw Mr. Fogle around the December holidays and that they played poker and shot shotguns together. Mr. Harris said Mr. Fogle spoke little about his job, though he had talked about working closely with Russian officials. Friends would sometimes rib Mr. Fogle about his discretion over his job, Mr. Harris said. "He worked for the government and he did something he didn't talk about, really," he said.

A message posted to friends on Mr. Fogle's Facebook page indicated that he was slated to come back to the US soon, according to one of the friends. The April 11 posting read: "Countdown to America: 43 days, 2 hours, and 33 minutes".

It now seems Mr. Fogle's friends will see him earlier than expected.

US Ambassador to Moscow refuses to comment spy scandal, waves hand to journalists

US Ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul has left the Russian foreign office after an uncomfortable meeting over the recent arrest of a CIA agent, who allegedly tried to recruit a Russian intelligence officer.

Ambassador McFaul refused to comment on the contents of the talks, leaving the assembled crowd of journalists with nothing but a wave of hand and a faint smile as he was climbing into his car.

The alleged US spy, Ryan Fogle, was detained overnight, on May 13, after he contacted a Russian intelligence officer. Moscow has declared Fogle “persona non grata” and demanded he leave the country at once.

Today, the US Ambassador was summoned to the Russian Foreign Office in Smolenskaya Square where he spent over 30 minutes discussing the spy scandal.

US State Department spokesman confirms an officer at its Moscow Embassy was briefly detained and released.

The confirmation comes one day after Russia's counter-intelligence Federal Security Service (FSB) has detained an operative of the CIA in the act of recruiting an officer of a Russian special service.

Detention of a CIA agent in Moscow is a hindrance to Russia-US relations - Putin's spokesman

Ryan Fogle's attempt to recruit a Russian Special Services agent who was engaged in North Caucasus counterterrorism operations is a significant obstacle to the recent efforts to ameliorate US-Russian relations - said Dmitry Perskov Wednesday morning.



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May 15 2013, 16:12

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